Quarry Technology


Learn concepts related to the open-pit exploitation of mineral resources, particularly with regard to legislation, resource characterization, techniques, equipment (ornamental stone, sands and industrial minerals) and introduction to environmental issues and site restoration.

General characterization





Responsible teacher

José António de Almeida, Maria da Graça Azevedo de Brito


Weekly - 5

Total - 84

Teaching language



No specific requirements are needed.


[1] J. Almeida e C. Costa, Apontamentos de Tecnologia de Pedreiras, FCT/UNL, 2003.
[2] M. Revuelta & C. Jimeno, Manual de Evaluación y Diseño de Explotaciones Mineras, Entorno Grafico, SL, Madrid, 1997, ISBN 84-921708-2-4.
[3] Carlos López Jimeno, Manual de Aridos, Entorno Gráfico, SL, Madrid, 1994, ISBN 84-605-1266-5. [4] Carlos López Jimeno, Manual de Rocas Ornamentales, Entorno Gráfico, SL, Madrid, 1995, ISBN 84-605-4957-7.
[5] Vários autores. Manual de Perforacion Y Voladura de Rocas, série geotecnia, Instituto Geologico Y Minero de España, ISBN: 84-505-7007-7.

Teaching method

Teaching is provided by theoretical-practical sessions of 4 hours each where it is present technical concepts whenever possible with documented examples, and resolve quantitative problems. Field trips are planned to ornamental stone and aggregates quarries. All information and presentations are available on the Web (CLIP).

Evaluation method

The evaluation has two components: (1) two three-hour tests with theoretical part (without consultation) and practical part (with consultation); (2) on the last day of classes a test is given with questions taken from the previous tests and is asked to be solved within 24 hours and submitted to the teacher by email. The minimum mark in each test is 8. Component (1) can be replaced by exam.

Component (1) is worth 80% of the final grade (50% of theory and 30% of practice) and component (2) is worth the remaining 20%.

It is not considered frequency.

Subject matter

Terminology of quarries. Legislation. Quarry projects. Productivity of an equipment. General flowchart of quarrying ornamental rocks. Steps and equipment used for drilling, cutting, and transportation. Fracturing and stone size curves. Flowchart of a general exploration of aggregates. Steps and equipment for the operation of consolidated rocks. Mechanical and fragmentation blasting. Explosives. Loading and transportation of dimension stone. Flowchart of quarrying sands. Loading and transportation. Processing plants for ornamental stone, dimension stone and sands. Equipments and scaling. Environmental impacts of quarrying and preparation of a report. Quarry plans reports. Closure reports. Projects for environmental and landscape restoration. Environmental monitoring. Safety and regulations. Resolution of problems concerning quarrying and equipment sizing.


Programs where the course is taught: